when he threatens to leave

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  1. freshand40 profile image59
    freshand40posted 12 years ago

    i have been married for 2 years and i have 5 children ages 22,21,20,and 11 year old twins, one of my twins has downsyndrome. i have 2 grandchildren as well.  4 years ago i met my husband and was thrilled  that i finally met mr.right. but life in my world is hectic and comes with alot of responsibilities. i am begining to feel like my husband thinks he has taken on more than he can handle.  to me its normal with all the frustrations of parenting and finances, but to my husband i think its to much. although he says he loves me and the kids he gets in these moods sometimes and threatens to leave. usually over something stupid. i have started building a wall feeling that i need to protect myself from the pain if he should ever decide to go. he says he is going to get help and he is on antidepressants, i am at a loss. i dont know what to do. i myself have started counciling, i feel like we are growing apart and im scared that i finally found who i thought was not perfect but perfect for me and that im going to end up alone again. is my world really that big that even the best of the best wants to run...

    1. tobey100 profile image60
      tobey100posted 12 years agoin reply to this

      First off let me assure you it's NOT you.  Your husband definitely has some sort of personal problem or problems you can't solve.  He loves you and the kids but he's going to leave?   .......BS.  He's playing a head game as a means of forcing more responsibility on you to control everything and make his life more comfortable.  We've raised five kids on a law enforcement salary (you know we aren't rich) and every day brings a new crises but together we hang in and survive.  My bet is he wouldn't leave even if you told him to.  It may sound like a bold move and it's easy to say coming from someone not in your situation but the next time he starts up, tell him point blank to either get some professional help or you want him to leave.  You might be pleasantly surprised.

      1. freshand40 profile image59
        freshand40posted 12 years agoin reply to this

        its hard for me to be that forward although a friend of mine did that with her husband years ago and he got help. its just a scary thought, probably because if he chose to leave i wouldnt let him back. whether that is a proper response or not i know that is what i would do. a defense mechanism i guess.

    2. profile image57
      C.J. Wrightposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Why did you think he was your Mr. Right?

      1. freshand40 profile image59
        freshand40posted 12 years agoin reply to this

        i thought he was mister right because he seemed to take to family life well and said that he missed out on his kids and this is his chance to have a family.  but the first two years we were together(before marraige) we only had my son at the time 16, and then as soon as we said ido my ex husband said he was sorry and that he shouldnt have taken the twins away and sent them back to me then my older girls each had a kid and some struggles and at times had to stay with us. lots of pressure, i now have one of my older daughters staying with us she lost her job.  her daughter stays with her dad,  when the grandbaby stays over a couple nights a week it drives my husband nuts, which led to him saying its either her or me one of us has to go...good thing he apoligized becaused it would have been him. never ask a mother to chose between a man and a child.  it just seems as though maybe he took on more than he bargined for.

        1. profile image57
          C.J. Wrightposted 12 years agoin reply to this

          So your cicumstances changed. What he has today is more than he took on at the begining of the relationship. While somethings can't be avoided, ballance is key. I would suggest a book: Boundaries by Henry Cloud.

          Listen to the words you wrote: "never ask a mother to chose between a man and a child." Are you saying your children have more value to you than your husband? Agreed, if you have minor children, they require more care. However does that mean they should be valued more? His ultimatums are juvenile atempts at getting his needs met. The key is whether those needs can or should be met by you.

          1. freshand40 profile image59
            freshand40posted 12 years agoin reply to this

            i feel as though i balance things and he tells me all the time i take care of him very well...and although being a parent can be demanding at times its not every day...i say i would chose my kids over him to the fact that he should discuss whats ailling him not put me in the position to chose...something is frustrating him...if he wanted my attention then the 2 hours in the afternoon wouldnt be spent on the computer when the house is quiet but spent talking with me...not complaining about him on the computer its his down time after work im saying its not about him needing my attention...or he would take that time to get it...im sure we will figure this out i just dont understand his mood swings lately...and he himself says he dont know whats wrong....

            1. profile image57
              C.J. Wrightposted 12 years agoin reply to this

              He has disengaged from the relationship from the sounds of it. You two are no longer in a relationship but are simply coexisting. Not a good place. You two are going to have to start talking. Not talking about your problems...at first. Just talk about the weather, the news, etc. Spend time together then start going places together. Once you "re-connect" a bit you will have to start clearing the air and discussing problems.

              I'll tell you, from where your relationships appears to be now, it's easier to end it than restore it. You must decide, is it worth it?

    3. Disturbia profile image60
      Disturbiaposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Wow, first off let me say that I don't believe in Mr. Right.  Having said that, if this guy runs it seems to me like he'd be doing you a favor.  It would be one less responsibility for you because he's certainly not making your burdens any lighter.  He's seems to be adding to your stress by giving you something additional to worry about.  If he were "the best of the best" he would be your partner helping you cope with your struggles and you wouldn't be here seeking advice in the first place.

      1. tobey100 profile image60
        tobey100posted 12 years agoin reply to this

        I agree with Disturbia.  Sounds like you may have 6 kids.  Better recount.

    4. banzaradiwana profile image61
      banzaradiwanaposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      i just read your thoughts...and felt like reaching out.life is never a smooth ironed out sheet.yes, some of us do get a lot of extra crinkles.i feel your husband is feeling a bit hassled with your eficiency &competency.as a mother & a wife i used to play the dumbo frequently just to give my daughter &hubby a feeling that i'm imperfect as much or maybe more.its ok to play dumb at home do you agree?mother him but not smother.when there is love residing in both of your hearts nothing bad will happen.you do feel that HE REALLY IS THE BEST OF THE BESTso here i am sending a big hug to you.the trick is to adapt anytime so that you feel good all times.try the role of an" I can't " wife/mom sometmes &you'll see the difference smile takecare &God Bless

    5. adebuk99 profile image61
      adebuk99posted 12 years agoin reply to this


      1. freshand40 profile image59
        freshand40posted 12 years agoin reply to this

        although i agree that one should pray i have found that prayer alone doesnt bring peace and happiness...i was married to 2 ministers in my life and all the prayers in the world did not bring me peace....heartache yes my life almost taken yes....peace not so much...i do not blame this on god though cause man has his own free will...and it has not stopped me from believing or praying but coming from a life of true belief had not brought me peace and happiness...my husband now is not a believer and although we struggle and i am struggling within myself to keep walls from building from my own hurts he has brought me more happiness than the ones who did believe...

  2. Ms Chievous profile image67
    Ms Chievousposted 12 years ago

    it might be helpful to research borderline personality disorder.. just a guess...sad

  3. LaMamaLoli profile image60
    LaMamaLoliposted 12 years ago

    Although I tend to agree with whats been I said, I do think maybe he aint that bad. I think maybe he might be feeling overwhelmed, but he isnt getting across right. It could be that he gets scared because if he hasn't experienced family life before it can be a baptism of fire! I would sit him down and get him to talk. Tell him its ok to say its too much for him, its ok for him to want to run away sometimes - we all do- but its not ok to just threaten to leave over silly things. Just talking honestly will hopefully make him realise that you can both make it work. But you can't do it on your own. If you can't get him to understand, then maybe you should suggest he take a break and both of you have a chance to think about what you really want. I'm just in a nice mood today!! And I would also like to say that I also have three children. Two are under 10 and the third is 40! The 40 year old is the hardest work...!

    1. freshand40 profile image59
      freshand40posted 12 years agoin reply to this

      to be honest i feel like he needs all my attention or hes not happy. its just not possible to give all my attention to him. he gets sick often, with all kinds of medical issues which require my care for him but when he is well i dont take care of him the same. ahhh the clothes are in your draw you can get them out your well now...i know i must sound bitter but i am more frustrated than anything...

  4. Mighty Mom profile image80
    Mighty Momposted 12 years ago

    As always in marriage, some compromise is needed.
    You say when you first got together you only had one 16-year-old son in the house. That is what your husband expected he was taking on.
    Suddenly that changes -- bigtime. He's now got twins, a special needs child, plus your older daughters coming back into the picture with their own kids.
    That's a HUGE LEAP from what he thought he was signing up for.
    You rightly point out that all this familial activity is normal for you. But NOT for someone who never had kids.

    When you make decisions about helping your older daughters out and stay with you -- do you discuss it with your husband, or just do it? Knowing that having the grandbaby stay over a couple of nights a week annoys him, have you discussed other arrangements with your daughter?

    I absolutely agree with your statement that a man should never ask a woman to choose between him and her children. He will NOT win (been there myself). But don't you think he could be sending you a strong signal that he needs your attention and love? He is competing for that with a force that is way stronger than he is.
    As the woman and the mother, you have the ability to set boundaries that work for everyone -- including YOU (I imagine you feel caught in the middle. That sucks).

    As for your husband's mental state, the dark moods and threats to leave sound so familiar to me! I hope he has been properly diagnosed by a PSYCHIATRIST. Not all antidepressants are created equal. And he could be bipolar, not just depressed.
    And I will end with my standard MM query. Is there any substance abuse going on???

    1. freshand40 profile image59
      freshand40posted 12 years agoin reply to this

      no substance abuse...even though it was primarially just my son, i had the twins often and one of my older daughters stayed with us til she had her baby for a few months...he knew the package deal.  he has 2 daughters of his own 27 an 25 but hadnt lived with them since they were small.. as i told him his ex wife gets the drama and so does her fiance with his daughters, you are here and get the drama here.  he is definitly dealing with some type of depression...bipolar i dont think one of my daughters has that...but definatly depressed...we have been through alot and that is no axageration trust me,, between money kids and health we have been slammed it would make anyone depressed,

  5. KCC Big Country profile image87
    KCC Big Countryposted 12 years ago

    Based on what I've read here, it sounds like it's just become too much for him.   And to be honest, from the outside looking in, I don't know many that could just jump into your lifestyle and handle it easily.  It's one thing, if you've been involved from the beginning and adapted along the way as you have.  But, to be thrust into it is not easy.  Since you said he seems to have his own medical issues and neediness, it's probably doubly difficult for him.

    Let's look it from a practical standpoint.  Do you get that much help from him now? Would you get any less or more if he left?  If he wasn't living in the day-to-day middle of it, he made find it easier to come around and help knowing he could always go back home when things got rough.  Not living together and/or getting divorced is not the worst thing in the world.

    Good luck to you.

  6. Urbane Chaos profile image91
    Urbane Chaosposted 12 years ago

    1. When you dig deep through all his B.S., all it amounts to is this: He's a scared, insecure little boy.  Anytime someone threatens to leave constantly, and even goes so far as to make you choose between your kids and him, it's obviously a lack of self-worth on his part.

    2. Why does he feel this lack of self-worth?  It takes two to tango, as they say.  If you do devote 99% of your time to your kids, and 1% to him, that's what happens.  There has to be balance.

    3. Mr. Right doesn't exist.  He's a fairy tale.  Everyone has their issues, and there is no "perfect man".  There's just the man that you fall in love with and can build a strong bond with.  To me, it doesn't sound like the two of you have built that strong bond.

    4. For the relationship to work, you have to learn how each other feels loved.  You have to learn to really learn to listen to one another.  I think he's trying to tell you things that you can't hear.

    When all is said and done, you only have two options.  Either you can change yourself and your behaviors, or you can go on your way.  It's impossible to change him, he has to have the want to change.  Only you can make your own decisions.  If there's nothing left to salvage then quit drawing out the pain and get out.  If there is something left, then you'll have to be the one to take the initiative and make the change.  Once he begins feeling loved, he'll reciprocate.

    Either way, you must take care of yourself and your intimate family first.

  7. profile image0
    Home Girlposted 12 years ago

    Well, what happened to the idea of adult children living separately? Aren't you entitled to your own life? Should you take care of your grown-up children till the day you die? Think about it. And don't expect a man from the street suddenly comes and takes care of everything! You expect too much. He needs some space too. He is not your life-crutch, even if you need one. You have to talk to him and to make changes. I have a 29 years old son living with me in a small apartment and that fact drives me crazy and I desperately think about my way out. I know how not easy it is.

    1. Dorothee-Gy profile image66
      Dorothee-Gyposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Wow, I must say, I have the deepest respect for the huge task he and you are trying to stem here. Honestly, everyone who says, he should have known that upfront or whatever else was said along the lines that this guy is not doing what he can, cannot ever have tried to do what you are taking over day for day.

      I married a man with a 5 year old, and as much as I love both, from time to time I find myself in the thought how nice I had it alone... It is a huge difference if it are your children and you feel like you have to care and provide for them forever (even though I'd not agree with that attitude, I think there must be a time when they know that they have to stand on their own feet, provided they are healthy and in a normally stable condition), or if it are the kids of someone else, practically people you have no deeper relationship to, who feel thoroughly entitled to take away your private life and your spouse and expect you to just stand there and come to grabs with it somehow.

      You both have my deepest respect and I think if you could come to a place to see that he is not endebted to any of your children, and that it is a blessing and a gift for you that he takes all these problems in order to be with you, you would have a better relationship right away.

      I don't know how often  you appreciate what he's doing, how often you tell him how wonderful you think he manages it, how grateful you are for taking all these challenges on. I don't know if you realize how much he must love you in order to do all that. But I know that it is everything else but a no-brainer that he does it, I assure you that it is a head-trip for him (after all, should it go wrong, it doesn't really matter how much love and strength he brought up for it, he will always be the one man out, while you will always be the mom for all your children), and it is everything but easy.

      Let him know that you adore him for what he does (and ask yourself honestly how you would react in the opposite case, even though you will not be able to even remotely get into his shoes in your thoughts), let him know how happy you are that he's there, ask him what you can do to make it easier for him, and concentrate on what he does for you and the kids and not on his weaknesses when he runs out of power.

      And even though it is a common phrase to say "never ask a  mother to decide between a husband and her children", don't give him the impression that all his wishes are secondary anyway and he comes behind your kids.

      After all, once they are out of the house, it might still be him you want to live with, it might be him who gives you company, it might be him who you can turn to when your kids are driving you crazy.

      The feeling of being in the back seat, of taking on a "naturally" inferior place in the family, might be a sure thing to drive him away from you. He needs to have a seat next to you, you need to be a family and not a mom with 4 kids, 2 grandkids and (perhaps) a man, if he behaves and knows where his place is.

      In a family, he must have a vote, too. Otherwise, he cannot take on this huge responsibility without feeling utterly trapped and helpless to change the circumstances he might feel overwhelmed with.

      Your life is everything but easy, I agree, but it doesn't get easier when you have to deal with it alone, and I think you can only keep him on a long term basis, when you really and honestly acknowledge him for what he does for you and your kids.

    2. freshand40 profile image59
      freshand40posted 12 years agoin reply to this

      rearing children as they get older becomes a bigger task for sure...i have had to use tough love and it hasnt been easy...my son left at 18 because he started breaking rules at home...drinking girls over etc..i told him he is 18 and free to leave but he couldnt break the rules..a week later he moved out and its been 2 years and other than visits and phone calls he has worked and kept a roof over his head...my girls however well they are alittle tougher...i told them if they had a child they had to get a place of their own and raise them on there own...no simple task...my oldest has done this with only one stay with me for 4 months my grandbaby is 4 now and her and mommy are fine...my other daughter well lost custudy of her baby now 3 to the babies dad...and with me for the 3rd time...just got another job and my frustration with her has grown until lately i wrote her a letter telling her i know it seems i am hard on her but she has a daughter who needs her and she needs to get on her feet and get her back...a few days later she got a job...its hard being a mom the hardest job in the world...but i see my kids are figuring out ...i just want my marraige to be ok...i admire him taking on my family it isnt easy but what once felt like a partnership has me feeling more like a burden...i still have my twins 11 years old to raise and one with special needs who will be with us for life...if he feels overwhelmed now. how will he handle the rest of the journey....

  8. SandyMcCollum profile image64
    SandyMcCollumposted 12 years ago

    I think showing him support is important, equally as showing the kids. Make time for him, more than you have because it's not enough. I'm by no means saying you are lacking and that's caused this. I agree with most other people say here, but you can spread yourself too thin. Make a date night or something if you can. It's sad that he uses leaving as the end-all solution, and it's understandable that he wasn't ready for what he took on. But, he needs to adjust, too. As long as you both are trying to adapt, it can work. After a few more years it'll be so every day to him that he'll handle it without flinching. He did agree to "for better or worse," right? Not a promise to leave when the going gets tough.

    Good luck, I will pray it works in your favor. Be strong, you have a heavy load to bear.

  9. Lisa HW profile image61
    Lisa HWposted 12 years ago

    I've kind of lost track of who you said moved in and moved out etc., but I'm wondering if, maybe, there's some way you can kind of structure your days/weeks a little so that you have time to yourself, time with just you and your husband, time with your twins and just you, time with them and your husband, etc. etc.  I know it sounds like a real challenge, but with the 20-plus-year-old people I'd think you could tell them something like, "After 8:30 at night I'd like to spend my time with 'Fred', so I'd like not to be taking care of any grandchildren after 8:30."  I'm guessing your twins must be in school, so I'd think there could be some time for yourself (or "Fred" - the name I've given your husband - or else for the grandchild, etc. during the school hours.  Or, maybe that would be a chance for you to talk on the phone or spend time with the the grown sons or daughters if that's necessary.

    I'd assume your twins need your attention in one way or another after school, so what you set aside school hours for your time with either the grandchild or seeing your older kids, after school time and right-after-dinner-time for your twins; and most of the evening for "Fred". 

    OR, how about something like, "Friday nights for you and 'Fred', Saturdays for you, Fred, and the twins as family time; and maybe Sunday morning for you and Fred (until the twins get up, but maybe ask them to entertain themselves mornings while you and "Fred" sit and have tea and brunch - that kind of thing.  Sunday afternoons could be "whole-family visiting" or visiting whoever would be around.

    You could also do something like have Wednesday nights for "all family" dinner, but Friday nights for you and "Fred" to eat dinner out (find someone to stay with the twins).  If you spend plenty of time with 'Fred' between Friday night and Sunday, what about something like going out with one of your older kids for coffee Monday evening (that type of thing).

    Besides putting some structure to time (and it can have some flexibility when necessary, but setting aside some basic chunks of time or days for one person or another may assure one-on-one time with everyone who needs it.  (I understand helping the grown kids and being there for them.  I do think, though, that being supportive and "being there"; or even having them live with you, doesn't mean they shouldn't realize they should let you have some time with "Fred" without their being there too.

    If your husband spends a couple of hours on the PC, arrange that he spends it when you're on your "someone else" time. 

    Adding a little structure to who's in what space may help too.  Again, I don't mean a "big, strict" set of rules - just a little structure.  Make sure "Fred" has his own space and none of the kids go in it.  Make sure the younger kids have their own space (even if they share a room), and tell the others to stay out of it.  Keep the younger ones out of the older ones' space.

    What I think I might do after kind of thinking up some "framework" for time and space (to break up who's around and turning things unpleasant and chaotic a little bit), I think I'd tell "Fred":

    "I don't want to separate, but if you really want to leave then leave.  If you don't want to leave, then quit saying you're going to leave.  It's hurting the relationship.  Then I think I'd tell him I'd figured out a little bit of a "time and space" type of thing, and see if he'd work with me on that.

    If he spends time with his kids, let that be your extra time with your kids and grandchild.  If Fred works, use his work hours as your own time.   If you're taking care of the baby, aim to have him in bed at a decent hour unless he isn't feeling well.  If you have a twenty-something with a baby, have her take care of her own baby after x o'clock (or before x'clock, depending on when she's home).  That type of thing.

    It looks to me as if you have everybody's time and space all mixed in together, and you may not really have time for any of them alone.  (I know I may be wrong on that one - it's just how it comes across on here.)

    To me, you have only the two eleven-year-old children.  (I know your special needs child must need extra attention or care, and the other one must need your attention in one way or another too.)  Two young kids shouldn't be all that disruptive to a marriage (even if the guy isn't their father); or one baby during the work day (while the twins are in school) shouldn't be all that big a problem either.  I'd just think if you tell Fred he'll after the kids' bedtime for "together time", and if you devote something like Friday nights, Saturday and Sunday mornings, and maybe late Sunday nights to "grown-up" time - Fred shouldn't be complaining about that.  Maybe, too, he could use a night out by himself with a friend or family member.

    Even if any of the grown kids sleep at your house, they really ought to be "entertaining themselves" without turning all of your evenings into "everyone-and-his-brother" time with you and Fred.  They ought to be taking care of their own dishes and rooms, and helping you (maybe by spending some one-on-one time with each of the twins once a week or so).

    I think you ought to go to that counselor, ask for tips on how to work out some of what's going on, and ask him/her to talk to Fred and all the grown kids if necessary, about the fact that you, as the mother of a special-needs kid, need some support coming from the rest of them too (especially from "Fred").

    I understand your kids are still young, but they're grown.  Living with adults can be challenging, but it doesn't have to be awful if everyone takes care of his own stuff, buys his own food (if possible), takes care of his own dishes, etc., and just comes and goes without doing something like sacking out in the living room with everyone else.  They ought to be going out and away from the house, and they ought to have their own tv's in their own rooms - maybe even stuff like their own little refrigerators and little food supply.  Blended families can be done.  (It's done all the time.)  I just think there needs to be particular awareness of everyone's time, space, and one-on-one time with the different individuals in the picture.

    Maybe none of this could work for you.  It's what worked for me (not a blended family, but three kids, work, the house, a husband, a mother who needed some help with rides and groceries, and handling other things for our family) when my kids were little.  There was before school time (with the kids), after school/before his work time with their father, time for me and preschool children and my mother before the school day ended, afternoon time with the kids, evening with all of us, early evening for the kids, later evenings for my husband, late night for my getting some work done, Saturday and Sunday mornings for me and my husband until the kids got up, weekend afternoons for all of us, etc. etc.   Yes, sometimes we had to deviate, but we still had that basic framework to return to. 

    You have the two young kids and Fred.  Nobody ought to have to be kicked out (not even Fred), but everybody needs to start kicking in a little cooperation, I'd think (including Fred).

    Good luck.  If all these thoughts are wrong or useless for you - oh well, maybe they'll give some other people some ideas.   hmm

    1. freshand40 profile image59
      freshand40posted 12 years agoin reply to this

      things are very structured and rules are set...we have saturday date night when the twins visit their dad and my oldest stays at a friends that night...when my grandbaby stays over my daughter has to take her upstairs at 7  to her room to watch a movie or read to her to settle her down for the night...my husband goes to bed between 7-8 twins in bed by nine...so i have things very structured and take out time with my honey...i am sure this is just a moment in our relationship we all have them but when he throws leaving as an option this is where things get tough...he says he dont mean to say that...and i explain that it hurts and makes me feel insecure that one of these times he will follow through...and mind you when he says this it is over nothing...he gets in these moods that come out of no where and just as quickly as they come his mood changes again and he acts like nothing bothered him in the first place....he says he is going to get help and i hope he does...l love him very much but going through this has left me building a wall of protection and having a hard time allowing myself to open up to him emotionally when he throws on the charm...i am trying not to do this but i have been through a life of pain and i dont want to be hurt again....

  10. melimoo xXx profile image57
    melimoo xXxposted 12 years ago

    first of all i would like to say that I THINK an all round person who is completly stable in themselves ( and in love ) will never "threaten" to leave, when it comes to the heartbreaking decision that something has become too much for them ~ they should sit back, reflect and approach it very tactfully and regretfully to their spouse. Yes its a very major choice that may result in them feeling angry aboout the situation but he owes you the respect to deal with things more rationally. YOU werent aware what the future held regarding your kids eithr, thats why we say the vows " for better or for worse" ~ life is unpredictable but we promise to be there for eachother even when the going gets tough ~ and this is just a rough patch ~ your daughter will eventually land back on her feet and her own life will fall into place, i definitly think your doing right in helping her out in the meantime ~ your her MOTHER!! regarding your husband ~ is there other areas in his life that he's finding difficult as in the workplace?? i find when we are stressd we take it out on those closest to us even if they arnt the cause.. if hes goin through a crisis, he may focus in on you as if your homelife is the root but the truth s he could be just stressd, bored or fed up, but not of you, he just needs to spice up his life a bit maybe!!
    get to know eachother again!! im sure your daughter that has moved home is capable of holding the fort for a night/ wknd?? do something nice for yourselves... not to discuss the negatives but to let your hair down, so that you dont assosiate eacother wth difficult times!! you may fall in love all over again which will lead to the " i felt lately that u were .." talk which is when your issues can be discussed and resolved...
    he may need to be understood but he may also need to be given the boot, try the first but by no means let him make u feel like your walking on eggshells with ur family, he needs to grow up, man up, and be your rock as im sure ur finding this hard too ~ best of luck

  11. ItsThatSimple profile image60
    ItsThatSimpleposted 12 years ago

    I noticed you alluded to the idea of your husband possibly believing that he has too much on his hands and can't handle it. From the sound of it, he may need a little reminder that life isn't easy, there are surprises and challenges along the way. Overcoming them and accepting things that we can't change is what makes us grow as people. Running away as he threatens isn't the answer. Leaving you to cope with it all on your own! What a terrible situation! I absolutely have to commend your composure in writing this and dealing with it all.

    1. Dorothee-Gy profile image66
      Dorothee-Gyposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      I still must say, I'm astonished how many people think it is absolutely no big deal for your partner, or at least, it shouldn't be. Actually, I think it is one and it is a wonderful thing that he takes all that on, just to be with you!

      I think we should never forget that the situation of a parent who comes in when the kids are already there (especially if he never had any of his own) is so much more difficult as when you have your own children. First, nature is really giving you an adjusting time with a 9-months pregnancy, and then you see the little one's, their faces when they sleep, their first smiles etc. So your band grows, with each and every one of these incidents, and by the time they're out of the diapers, you already have a very strong attachment to them and they are still in a state where they are most of the time adorably cute. 

      But how different is that for a partner who didn't have that story? He didn't have all these heartwarming moments, he is confronted with kids who very often sense the differences in position between this new family member and the "old" family. Every time you waver and give him the impression that he's secondary, they will jump in there, because they want to make sure that they are in the front seat.

      This happens naturally, and in a way, they will always be, but if you voice it, if you announce it, if you let them and him feel it, you weaken his position and you make his situation in your family less desirable and more unsettling.

      I can only live with my husband and his son, because he never allows the slightest doubt in our now 6-year old that I have a full right to be in this group, that as a mum, I have a clear saying in what's going on and that there is no discussion about my position in the family "pack". If I'd notice that he was torn between our son and me, it would be detrimental for our whole relationship, and I think it would not have a chance.

      The bond between a mum and her children will always be there, clearly, but it doesn't have to be stressed, because this creates a very unhealthy dynamic in the family. You have to give him a prominent place in your family, or he will not be able to cope with all that what is going on.

      After all, he fell in love with one person, which is you, and he suddenly ended up with a whole bunch of people who all compete for your attention and your time and love. And as kids, they know exactly how to push his buttons, how to drive him up the wall with astounding precision. For me, it is absolutely no wonder that he sometimes must think, "What have I gotten myself into?".

      He's not there to make you happy, as well as you're not responsible for his own happiness, as happiness is always an inside-job. But you can offer him understanding and support and acknowledge what he so far has done out of love for you, and that will make both of your life's better.

      If you make him feel good about himself, if you give him the impression that he does a good job after all, if he finds himself settled securely in his position next to you, the temptation to leave and find happiness somewhere else will be way less.

      But if he has the feeling that his situation is dependend on a lot of circumstances he has no influence on, if he feels that he's out of the crowd, that you live in the first place for your kids and he's somewhere inferior than that, then his temptation to find happiness in a life without you and your family will be greater.

      And yes, I think striving for happiness is what we all do, it is not something he would not be entitled to. If he's not happy, he will not be of any help to you anyway, in the same way as we all cannot give anyone anything as long as we are banging through life unhappy and unsatisfied.

      Good luck and much strength for all of you!

  12. zthao89 profile image58
    zthao89posted 12 years ago

    My husband feels like I'm a burden on him. So when he threatens to leave, I say, "GO AHEAD!"...I would rather he leave me for the right reasons than stay for the wrong reasons. Every person chooses their own path in life -- let him do what he wants. Sometimes, some marriages are just unsalvageable. Forgive, forget, move on.


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